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FG suspends certificate accreditation from Benin, Togo

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The Federal Ministry of Education has disclosed that it suspended the evaluation and accreditation of degree certificates from Benin and Togo Republic pending an investigation completed.

This was made known in a statement signed by the Director Press and Public Relations, Mrs Augustina Obilor-Duru, adding that the suspension is viable from 2nd January 2024.

This development came due to recent investigation dubbed, ‘UNDERCOVER: How DAILY NIGERIAN reporter bagged Cotonou varsity degree in 6 weeks, participated in NYSC scheme’

The statement disclosed that the investigation would involve the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria and the two countries, the ministries responsible for Education in the two countries as well the Department of State Security Services and the National Youths Service Corps.

It read, “The attention of the Federal Ministry of Education has been drawn to the commendable work of investigative journalism that led to the publication by the Daily Nigerian Newspaper dated 30th December 2023 titled ‘UNDERCOVER: How DAILY NIGERIAN reporter bagged Cotonou varsity degree in 6 weeks, participated in NYSC scheme.’ This was also carried in various social media.”

Obilor-Duru noted that the report authenticated the suspicion that a few Nigerians conveyed evil means and unseemly strategies to get a degree with the end objective of landing graduate pm job opportunities for which they were not qualified.

The ministry then urged the public to support its efforts, show understanding and give useful information that would help the committee in finding lasting solutions to forestalk further occurrence.

The spokesperson also noted that the ministry had begun internal administrative processes to evaluate the culpability or otherwise of her staff for which applicable Public Service Rules would be applied.

“The issue of degree mills institutions, i.e institutions that exist on paper or operate in clandestine manner outside the control of regulators is a global problem that all countries grapple with. FME has been contending with the problem including illegal institutions located abroad or at home preying on unsuspecting, innocent Nigerians and some desperate Nigerians who deliberately patronize such outlets,” the statement reads.

She said ministry and the National University Commission had warned against the resort to such institutions and in some cases, reports made to security agencies to apprehend the perpetrators.

Obilor-Duru added that the ministry would keep on inspecting its strategy to plug any loopholes, processes and procedures and deal decisively with any conniving officials.

“The ministry had always adopted the global standard for evaluation and accreditation of certificates of all forms which relies on receipt of the list of accredited courses and schools in all countries of the World,” she said.

The ministry equally gave the assurance it was already introfucing mechanisms to cleanse the education sector, including dissuading the quest for degree certificates, locally or from foreign countries, via re-fortied focus on inclusivity: reliance on all skill sets as directed by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

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